ComEd is asking residents to voluntarily conserve electricity and warned that rolling power outages are possible in the Chicago area as the bitter cold continues.
“As our communities continue to experience bitter cold, safety remains our top priority,” Commonwealth Edison said in a statement on social media Saturday afternoon.
ComEd said that PJM Interconnection, the regional grid operator that includes ComEd, has asked people across 13 states and Washington D.C. to “look for ways to safely and voluntarily conserve electricity.”
PJM is asking residents to do so until 10 a.m. Sunday. “We’re working to ensure safe & reliable service,” ComEd said.
PJM Interconnection said they thank their customers for their efforts to conserve electricity, “particularly during the holiday season when many are gathering.”
The grid operator said they will do everything to try and prevent rotating outages, but warned the “risk is real and we ask consumers to continue conservation efforts.”
ComEd said residents can set their thermostats a few degrees lower and postpone running the dishwasher or doing laundry.
Residents should also turn off their lights and appliances when they are not being used, ComEd said.
The northern Illinois area is currently under a wind chill advisory with wind chills of 20 to 25 degrees below zero expected, the National Weather Service (NWS) said.
The advisory is in effect until 10 a.m. Sunday.
The NWS warned that the cold wind chills could cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes.